Email Below is the full transcript as delivered of President Obama's speech to a joint session of Congress on Feb.
What is a Joint Session of Congress? As one of the most influential moral leaders in the world, it was an honor to welcome Pope Francis to the Capitol for his historic address. While I am not a Catholic, I was very impressed by what the Pope had to say on important issues like the need to stand up for human life and the importance of traditional families.
Pope Francis also urged Congress to never lose focus on our ultimate responsibility: Joint sessions of Congress are actually a pretty rare occurrence in Washington.
During a joint session, members of the House and the Senate come together in the House chamber to hear from a guest speaker. The meetings are traditionally held in the House chamber because the room is larger and can seat more people.
The Vice President, who serves as the president of the Senate, is often present for joint sessions, and he sits on the dais next to the Speaker of the House. The most well-known joint sessions of Congress are State of the Union addresses. Presidential inaugurations are also technically joint sessions of Congress, even though they often take place outside the Capitol building.
A joint session of Congress is also convened to count the electoral votes from Presidential elections and to certify the results. Joint sessions of Congress must be called by leaders of the House or the Senate, and the President cannot unilaterally call for a joint session.
That said, it is not uncommon for a president to work with Congressional leaders to arrange special joint sessions if the President would like to speak out on an important issue or a major world event.
Bush to outline his strategy for defeating terrorism around the globe. Another common reason for a joint session of Congress would be to hear from a foreign leader or dignitary, as was the case with Pope Francis.
The first foreign leader to address a joint meeting of Congress was King Kalakaua of Hawaii in Since then, there have been foreign leaders to address a joint session of Congress. Since I entered Congress inwe have had four joint sessions of Congress to hear from foreign leaders.
In SeptemberUkrainian President Petro Poroshenko came before Congress to discuss the threats his country was facing from Russia. Also in March, Ashraf Ghani, the president of Afghanistan, spoke to Congress about the progress his country has made and the challenges that remain. So as you can probably tell, joint sessions of Congress are a relatively uncommon event, but they almost always carry significance.
That was certainly the case last week as Pope Francis stood before Congress for his historic address.George W. Bush on the 9/11 attacks, A Spotlight on a Primary Source by George W. Bush President George W. Bush delivered this address to a joint session of Congress on September 20, , little more than a week after the September 11 terrorist attacks.
President Bush addressed a joint session of Congress and the American people tonight, stating: "We are a country awakened to danger and called to defend freedom.". 31 rows · This is a list of joint sessions and joint meetings of the United States Congress.
To date, . On March 2, a joint session of Congress was held in the House of Representatives chamber of the Capitol to celebrate the th anniversary of the first meeting of Congress in New York City. Introduction After officially enacting the newly ratified US Constitution in September , the Confederation Congress scheduled the first inauguration for March Address by the President to a Joint Session of Congress.
United States Capitol Washington, D.C. And here’s the other thing I want the American people to know: The American Jobs Act will not add to the deficit. It will be paid for. And here’s how. (Applause.).